Man offered little girls chocolate to go behind the slide, said he was ‘just looking’

File photo of playground. STEVE BLOOM/staff photographer
File photo of playground. STEVE BLOOM/staff photographer The Olympian

The man creeped out both children and parents at a Lakewood playground.

He approached three little girls and asked them each individually to go to a secluded area behind the slide with him, records show.

The 26-year-old offered at least one of them chocolate.

“They stated they thought they were going to be hurt by the defendant based on his incoherent speech and because he wanted them to come with him,” according to court documents.

The girls – ages 7, 9 and 11 - ran home to tell their parents what happened.

Two men at the playground blocked the man from riding his bicycle away until police arrived.

He told officers he was “just looking” at the little girls like they were “my girlfriend,” records show.

Police took the man into custody. As he was being walked to a patrol car, a woman claiming to be his grandmother expressed concern that he’d eventually get into trouble and said he needed help. She said he uses drugs and might suffer from mental illness.

On Monday, he pleaded not guilty to three counts of luring and was ordered jailed in lieu of $100,000.

Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653